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Rasmus

Best Greek yogurt starter?

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43 minutes ago, gfron1 said:

Our kitchen is always 72-74º

We've bought from a few places online. Most of the culture sellers have it. Most often it comes in a packet with other strains as well.

I found a place that sells it on-line in Canada.  Cost is $12 plus $3 postage.  Is that reasonable?

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11 hours ago, ElsieD said:

I found a place that sells it on-line in Canada.  Cost is $12 plus $3 postage.  Is that reasonable?

That's a fair price. We buy the heirloom collection from Cultures for Health and I just looked and they do have a Greek variety. But I agree that the culture is less important than straining to make what most people think of as Greek yogurt. The only reason we use Caspian Sea is that it responds best to our milk and our method.

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My interest in Greek yogurt is in its thickness; is there a way to get that without straining?

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1 hour ago, TdeV said:

My interest in Greek yogurt is in its thickness; is there a way to get that without straining?

The higher the fat content, the thicker and milder the product.

The first two photos are yogurt made with half & half.  The last is yogurt made with heavy cream.

I used the cultures from NewEngland Cheesemaking  and have used those cultures for years.

They keep in the freezer for a very long time.

2132353812_HALFHALFYOGURT1copy.jpg.7406a864a9ac89d750fceb9024702dd5.jpg

1984818073_HALFHALFYOGURT2copy.jpg.855ce339c72937b8297d5d06ebefab10.jpg

1397251302_HEAVYCREAMEXTRATHICKYOGURT2copy.jpg.7fb3d653c7a1a5baf5b8cf52f5809e55.jpg

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"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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2 hours ago, TdeV said:

My interest in Greek yogurt is in its thickness; is there a way to get that without straining?

Essentially, straining is part of its definition.   

 

hat is your objection?     It's terribly simple.    No special equipment needed.     Any strainer, a dish-towel and a bowl + several hours.   

 

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3 hours ago, gfron1 said:

That's a fair price. We buy the heirloom collection from Cultures for Health and I just looked and they do have a Greek variety. But I agree that the culture is less important than straining to make what most people think of as Greek yogurt. The only reason we use Caspian Sea is that it responds best to our milk and our method.

 

I'm really intrigued by your method and would like to try it.  Is it just regular homogenized milk (not low fat) milk that you use?

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Posted (edited)

I've never successfully made yogurt...  Tried a couple of times and ended up with sour milk that did not thicken.  Never got around to going full science project on it.  Kefir has been sufficient for many purposes... But this thread makes me want to push the yogurt button on my IP and see what happens.


Edited by cdh (log)
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Christopher D. Holst aka "cdh"

Learn to brew beer with my eGCI course

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17 minutes ago, cdh said:

I've never successfully made yogurt...  Tried a couple of times and ended up with sour milk that did not thicken.  Never got around to going full science project on it.  Kefir has been sufficient for many purposes... But this thread makes me want to push the yogurt button on my IP and see what happens.

 

 

I hear you, on all counts. That was actually the clinching reason I finally yielded to IP fever, back in the autumn, but I haven't tried it yet (have not used my IP at all for months, as far as that goes).

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Posted (edited)

I'll add that i also was not successful in making desirable (read: texture and deliciousness) yogurt using a traditional yogurt maker.   It was only in trying the  descending heat method, brought to my attention by a French food writer, that I have had consistent success.    As mentioned upthread, the richness of the milk will contribute to the texture and mouth-feel.    Adding dry milk to non-fat milk should/might mitigate this.    I just use whole milk and am delighted with the results.    As good as I've been served in Europe.   At very little cost.

 

When I grow up, I will make a batch using local Saint Benoit all jersey milk.    The whole milk, at around $6/qt, is cream colored.   I can only imagine the yogurt it would make!    Compared to store-bought organic, it would not be expensive.    Perhaps soon...


Edited by Margaret Pilgrim (log)
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4 hours ago, ElsieD said:

I'm really intrigued by your method and would like to try it.  Is it just regular homogenized milk (not low fat) milk that you use?

We buy local, homogenized, organic milk, regular fat.FWIW. I've never really overthought the process...just did it and it works for us. I already passed Andiesenji's comments on to my sous to try the heat and cool method to see if it increases our output.

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Posted (edited)
On 7/3/2019 at 8:35 AM, TdeV said:

@kayb, I was actually curious about the comparison between IP and CSO. 🤓

 

I've seen steam oven recipes for yogurt, like this one from Miele, who actually have a yogurt function on some of their steam ovens, but I don't believe the CSO is well suited to that purpose.  It doesn't have temp settings low enough (I believe 125°F for plate warming is the lowest) nor time setting long enough for what you'd want for yogurt making.  And in my kitchen, I'd never allow the CSO to be tied up for that many hours 🙃


Edited by blue_dolphin (log)
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Posted (edited)

The BEST way to get a consistent result is to follow the  specific directions.  Heat the milk or cream to at least 180° which is the temperature where the CASEIN converts.  I heat in the microwave in a 2 quart Pyrex measure  to 190°F 

I then cool it to 115° F.  And I have a high/low  alarm probe thermometer so I know the precise temperature. 

 

Any temperature HIGHER THAN 120° F   will KILL THE CULTURE AND YOU WILL JUST HAVE SOUR MILK.

 

I have been making yogurt since the 1970s and when I lived in my motorhome for 3 years when I was actively showing dogs,  I used a laboratory transport cooler which had thick insulation and with the use of a small heating pad, would maintain the yogurt at 95°F for the 12 hours incubation period.  

I use what works for me and have a Yogotherm (non-electric) that I mostly use for other dairy procedures  and I have 

A Tribest YoLife electric yogurt maker that came with a half-gallon jar and some smaller jars that I never used. 

I got it years ago when I was still working - early 2000s.  It works great for me.

 

Last year I evaluated a Proctor Silex yogurt maker - I think it made a quart - worked very well. It had not yet been launched so I had no idea what the price would be.  I gave it to the young woman who helps me in the house and yard from time to time.

I just checked, it is 40.99 on Amazon.  

The milk STILL HAS TO BE HEATED TO OVER 180°F. and then cooled to below 120 to add the culture but then the appliance will hold it at the pre-set temp 110°F.  until done.  

 

Editing to add photos of thermometers.  One is an inexpensive probe using a clip-on probe holder, also sold by Thermoworks.  The other is the high-low alarm thermometer from Thermoworks.  These photos are from 2011.

758871570_ScreenShot2019-07-05at3_44_50PM.thumb.png.afd912bec7805b5b59a8b6a7749dc45d.png

 


Edited by andiesenji (log)
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"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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